Recommendations to improve preconception health and health care--United States. A report of the CDC/ATSDR Preconception Care Work Group and the Select Panel on Preconception Care.

Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, Lebanon, New Hampshire, USA.
MMWR. Recommendations and reports: Morbidity and mortality weekly report. Recommendations and reports / Centers for Disease Control 05/2006; 55(RR-6):1-23.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT This report provides recommendations to improve both preconception health and care. The goal of these recommendations is to improve the health of women and couples, before conception of a first or subsequent pregnancy. Since the early 1990s, guidelines have recommended preconception care, and reviews of previous studies have assessed the evidence for interventions and documented the evidence for specific interventions. CDC has developed these recommendations based on a review of published research and the opinions of specialists from the CDC/ATSDR Preconception Care Work Group and the Select Panel on Preconception Care. The 10 recommendations in this report are based on preconception health care for the U.S. population and are aimed at achieving four goals to 1) improve the knowledge and attitudes and behaviors of men and women related to preconception health; 2) assure that all women of childbearing age in the United States receive preconception care services (i.e., evidence-based risk screening, health promotion, and interventions) that will enable them to enter pregnancy in optimal health; 3) reduce risks indicated by a previous adverse pregnancy outcome through interventions during the interconception period, which can prevent or minimize health problems for a mother and her future children; and 4) reduce the disparities in adverse pregnancy outcomes. The recommendations focus on changes in consumer knowledge, clinical practice, public health programs, health-care financing, and data and research activities. Each recommendation is accompanied by a series of specific action steps and, when implemented, can yield results within 2-5 years. Based on implementation of the recommendations, improvements in access to care, continuity of care, risk screening, appropriate delivery of interventions, and changes in health behaviors of men and women of childbearing age are expected to occur. The implementation of these recommendations will help achieve Healthy People 2010 objectives. The recommendations and action steps are a strategic plan that can be used by persons, communities, public health and clinical providers, and governments to improve the health of women, their children, and their families. Improving preconception health among the approximately 62 million women of childbearing age will require multistrategic, action-oriented initiatives.

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    ABSTRACT: There is a growing evidence base for preconception care - - the provision of biomedical, behavioral and social interventions to women and couples before conception occurs. Firstly, there is evidence that health problems, problem behaviours and individual and environmental risks contribute to poor maternal and child health outcomes. Secondly, there are biomedical, behavioural and social interventions that when delivered before conception occurs, effectively address many of these health problems, problem behaviours and risk factors. And thirdly, there is emerging experience of how to deliver these interventions in low and middle income countries (LMIC).
    Reproductive Health 09/2014; 11 Suppl 3:S8. DOI:10.1186/1742-4755-11-S3-S8 · 1.62 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Preconception care includes any intervention to optimize a woman's health before pregnancy with the aim to improve maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) outcomes. Preconception care bridges the gap in the continuum of care, and addresses pre-pregnancy health risks and health problems that could have negative maternal and fetal consequences. It therefore has potential to further reduce global maternal and child mortality and morbidity, especially in low-income countries where the highest burden of pregnancy-related deaths and disability occurs. A systematic review and meta-analysis of the evidence was conducted to ascertain the possible impact of preconception care for adolescents, women and couples of reproductive age on MNCH outcomes. A comprehensive strategy was used to search electronic reference libraries, and both observational and clinical controlled trials were included. Cross-referencing and a separate search strategy for each preconception risk and intervention ensured wider study capture. Women who received preconception care in either a healthcare center or the community showed improved outcomes, such as smoking cessation; increased use of folic acid; breastfeeding; greater odds of obtaining antenatal care; and lower rates of neonatal mortality. Preconception care is effective in improving pregnancy outcomes. Further studies are needed to evaluate consistency and magnitude of effect in different contexts; develop and assess new preconception interventions; and to establish guidelines for the provision of preconception care.
    Reproductive Health 09/2014; 11 Suppl 3:S1. DOI:10.1186/1742-4755-11-S3-S1 · 1.62 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Maternal mortality and severe morbidity are on the rise in the United States. A significant proportion of these events are preventable. The Maternal Health Initiative (MHI), coordinated by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau at the Health Resources and Services Administration, is intensifying efforts to reduce maternal mortality and severe morbidity in the U.S. Through a public-private partnership, MHI is taking a comprehensive approach to improving maternal health focusing on five priority areas: improving women's health before, during and beyond pregnancy; improving the quality and safety of maternity care; improving systems of maternity care including both clinical and public health systems; improving public awareness and education; and improving surveillance and research.